Single-Minded: The President and the Ladies of 'The View'
The president made daytime talk-show history. And it was a snooze.
Why is a man among women considered brave? There are greater acts of courage to be accomplished -- like, say, running for president at a time of crisis. Still, when President Barack Obama decided to make daytime talk-show history and show up for a sitdown with the ladies of The View, the first punch line was the most obvious: "You're a man; we're women. Scary!"
"You've gone through a little bit of a beating over the last month," said co-host Barbara Walters as she sat next to Obama. "Do you really think being on a show with a bunch of women, who never shut up, is going to be calming?" And the crowd, all hopped up on estrogen, goes wild.
"Look," replied the president, who seemed more than comfortable, "I was trying to find a show that Michelle actually watched, and this is it right here."
So it was another woman who led this man to the slaughter. Perhaps the first lady (a veteran of The View's couch herself) was offering up her husband as a sacrifice to the Emmy gods. In 13 seasons, daytime's answer to male-dominated punditry has won only two Emmys: one for Outstanding Talk Show in 2003 and another last year for Outstanding Talk Show Hosts.
Dressed as if they were on their way to either a funeral or a very solemn bar mitzvah, all five hosts showed up on Thursday to besiege the president on what he called "couches made for these little people." The teasers leading up to the historic event were filled with Technicolor stars and stripes boasting the red, white and View, but what actually happened was a fireside chat with no wind for the flame. Women in this case are no scarier than those kids who read the news for fun on YouTube.
"I am happy to be the first daytime talk-show host to ever say these words: When we come back, President Barack Obama will be here," gushed Whoopi Goldberg right before Obama took the main stage. That same Sweeps Week wonderment filled the rest of the women, who usually have opinions for the next hour. Sure, they asked some halfway journalistic questions about oil, racism, Afghanistan, but if there had to be a choice between being polite and being a pundit, The View's hosts picked tea and crumpets every time.